(Disclaimer: I do not claim to own Hetalia: Axis Powers in any way.)
Long, slender fingers rubbed gently over closed emerald eyes. An empty cup of tea rested near his other hand. They'd been in the room for two hours already with no end in sight. The week had been taxing, and Arthur was ready for it to simply be over.
Arthur stood for him seat. The lawyers had both decided it was about time for a break. Everyone in the room was weary. Everyone but Francis, the one that they all needed to tire. He kept insisting that Arthur needed to take his half of the things in their home, and he refused to settle until Arthur did so.
"How is it going in there?" Alfred was on his feet when Arthur entered the room. The American had been told it would be for the best if he stayed in the lobby during the proceedings. Arthur assured him many times that he didn't need to stay, but the American had refused to leave.
"Bloody Frenchman won't sign the papers."
Arthur sat down tiredly in the chair next to the one Alfred had been previously sitting in. The American sat back down and threw an arm over Arthur's shoulders. "He will," Alfred assured him. Arthur let himself lean into the other's embrace with another tired sigh.
"You shouldn't be so sure about that," Arthur told him. "Francis can be stubborn when he wants to."
"Just like you." Alfred smiled playfully. He leaned over to kiss Arthur's cheek.
The Englishman jumped at the contact and swatted the other away. "Not here," he told Alfred in embarrassment. He glanced furtively around the room to make sure that no one had been watching. When Arthur saw that no one was paying them any mind, he leaned over and quickly pecked Alfred's lips.
Alfred couldn't help but smile at the embarrassed flush littering Arthur's cheeks. "I love you, Arthur." Arthur looked at him sharply with something like...fear in his eyes. "Hey, I didn't-"
"I-I should get back to the meeting. They'll be starting again any minute." Arthur hurried away toward the meeting room again without a second glance back at the American. Alfred just smiled a bit sadly after him.
The knock at the door roused Alfred instantly. Arthur let out an annoyed growl when his previous pillow bounced out from under him. "Pizza is here!" Alfred called excitedly as he made his way for to the door of his apartment.
Arthur couldn't help but smile somewhat at the other's enthusiasm. For the fact that he had complained about ordering a pizza he seemed fairly enthusiastic about it. It was the only food choice the two had been able to agree on. That had only come as a decision because the two of them hadn't wanted to leave the apartment after they'd entered.
The movie that neither of them had really been watching anyway still played like a soundtrack in the background, as Alfred happily pulled open the door. There was no pizza waiting for him there.
"Mon ami," the blond Frenchman greeted. "I believe it's time for us to talk."
"You bastard," Alfred growled viciously.
"That is no way to greet a guest," Francis reprimanded. "We wouldn't want dear Arthur to know I was here now would we? Why don't we step outside, ami, and discuss this like gentlemen."
Alfred glanced into the other room. "Arthur, I've got to step out for a few minutes. I'll be back soon."
"How is Arthur," Francis asked calmly. The two walked through the halls of the apartment complex down to the parking lot. The further away from Arthur they were the better. They were both thinking it no matter if they voiced it or not.
"He's getting better," Alfred answered. He could hear the steel in his voice when he spoke to the Frenchman. He didn't bother to conceal it. Francis glanced at him before looking forward again. "Will you sign the papers?"
"So he can run away with you? What makes you think that I would let him do that? He'll be coming back to Italy with me." It was Alfred's turn to look at the other incredulously. "He is my husband after all. I won't let you come between the two of us."
Alfred couldn't help but laugh. The sound was bitter however. "You think you can keep him from staying? Arthur's not going to go back with you. You've ruined anything the two of you had together. We saw you with that girl, Francis. You destroyed anything Arthur felt for you."
"Oh, you're talking about seeing me with her while the two of you were on a date?" Francis countered. "I don't exactly see the problem with this, do you? If my husband decides to date why should I not feel the same obligation. Life is very lonely without your love, no?"
"You're the one who wasn't spending time with him!"
"And you're the one who tried to steal him away from me on my wedding night." Francis stopped leaving the two to stare at each other. "Any marital problems that Arthur and I are having are your doing, ami." He viciously jabbed a finger into Alfred's chest as he spoke. "The reasons for Arthur's sadness are your doing."
Alfred laughed again. His normally happy cerulean eyes were fiery and cold. "My doing! I didn't cheat on him!"
"But you tried to have him cheat on me," Francis growled. "i see something wrong with this picture."
"No," Alfred snapped taking angry steps closer to Francis. "I knew you would hurt him eventually, and I wanted him to leave before it happened. I know your type, Francis." The Frenchman seemed about to interrupt. "C'mon," Alfred growled, "you won't even dance with him the night we met. You brought him for a club, why? Did you just want to show him off? That was heartless of you."
The next thing Alfred registered was the hand colliding with his face. It sent him stumbling back with the unexpectedness of the blow. That wasn't to mention the fact that it hurt. Alfred clutched his jaw in pain. "Cheap shot," he growled at the Frenchman. "It doesn't count if I wasn't expecting it." Francis' smirk was wiped away.
"Why not try again then, no?"
Francis drew his arm back for another well-timed shot, but he was never able to deal the blow. He was sent stumbling back in the very same fashion that Alfred had. "It's only fair if there's two unexpected shots." Arthur waggled his fingers, "You have a solid head, Francis."
"Arthur!" Alfred exclaimed in surprise. A smile soon came to his lips. "That was awesome, dude!" He swung an arm around Arthur's shoulders. Instead of cursing and pushing him away, Arthur smiled a bit. Alfred was glad to see the pride from the praise reflected in his green eyes.
"It was fairly impressive, wasn't it?"
By this time France had made it back to his feet. He wiped at the forming welt on his face. "Would you really leave me for that, ma cherie?" Francis asked. He took a few steps closer to the couple; he was completely ignoring Alfred and focusing his attention on Arthur. "There's no need to rush into things. Can we not return home and discuss this?"
"Sign the papers, Francis. There's nothing left for us in Italy. There's nothing left for us anywhere. We're the ones who rushed into things. I need commitment, Francis, and that's something you can't give me." Arthur looked away. He didn't dare look at either Francis or Alfred. How could he?
Gently Francis kissed the Englishman before Alfred could get in the way. "If it will make you happy, I'll sign your papers, ma cherie."
"Thank you, Francis."
"What's it like?" Alfred asked in an incredibly sing-song voice.
"What is what like?" Arthur glanced up at Alfred over the newspaper. The American's hair was rumpled from sleep. He was clad in only his boxers, and Arthur could feel a slightly embarrassed blush creeping up his cheeks. He picked up his cup of tea to hide his embarrassment.
Alfred came closer with a smile. He scrubbed at one of his gorgeous blue eyes with the heel of his hand. "Being an unmarried man." He scooted behind Arthur on the little stool, as he wrapped his arms around the older man's middle. "Is it wonderful? Is it like a whole new world has been opened up before you?"
The Englishman chuckled lightly at the American. "You're unmarried, you know what it's like."
"But I've never been married before."
"Would you like to be?"
"Arthur?" The Englishman looked away nervously. "Well..." he went on just as nervously, "I suppose sometime it would be nice. I mean, I already know I love you," he ignored the cringe from the other blond, "but it would be nice to make it official someday."
Arthur shook his head. "I don't want to get married again," he whispered. "I don't want to be hurt like that again. It's just easier to deal with if marriage isn't involved." If not for the pained expression written all over Arthur's face, Alfred would have been hurt that Arthur thought he'd hurt him.
"I'm your hero; I promise I won't hurt you like that."
"No one means to be like that, Alfred. Francis never had the intention of cheating on me; he just couldn't help himself. I don't blame him." Arthur placed the paper down on the table to bury his head in folded arms. "I cheated on him too though. When I called you, and we started spending time together it was like we were dating."
Alfred pressed his nose into Arthur's wonderfully scented hair. "No one's perfect."
"Everyone wants to be though."
"As long as I've got you, I don't care whether I'm perfect or not."
"What's to say I won't cheat on you too? I've done it once."
"Aww!" Alfred cooed. He couldn't help but smile. "That's what this sad talk is all about?" Arthur was just so darn adorable. Alfred kissed gently along Arthur's neck. "You'd have to stop being happy for that to happen. I'm never going to let you be sad like that ever again! We're safe! I am the hero, after all. What kind of hero lets their damsel get all sad?"
The sound of Arthur chuckling quietly was like gentle music to Alfred's ears. He smiled happily when Arthur twisted around to meet their lips. "I love you," he purred against the American's lips. "Thank you for being my hero."
Author's Note: Thanks everyone for reading! This story wasn't supposed to make it to a second part and thanks to all the reviews and encouragements it has not made it to seven parts! This has been my first multi-chapter fanfiction and it has finally come to a close.
Hope everyone enjoyed!